An Ethics in Media study reveals that a whopping 95 percent of Americans are ” troubled by the current state of media.”
You couldn’t get 95 percent of the American people to agree that ice cream and sex are awesome, but 95 percent can come together to recognize just how horrible the media are.
But part of me is still wondering what’s wrong with the other five percent.
The study was conducted by the public relations firm Bospar and surveyed 1,010 American adults.
Specific reasons for why Americans are concerned do vary. But to no one’s surprise, after more than five years of this…
- Trayvon Martin Murdered by Racist White Man
- Michael Brown Yelled “Hands up, Don’t Shoot!” Before Racist Cop Murdered Him
- Brett Kavanaugh: Serial Rapist
- Trump Ordered His Attorney to Lie
- The Racist White Boys from Covington High School
- Trump Can’t Defeat Hillary
- Trump Is a Russian Manchurian Candidate
…“fake news” tops this list of concerns with a 53 percent majority.
Also hitting a near-majority are “reporting gossip” (49 percent) and “lying spokespeople” (48 percent).
Here are the runners-up:
- Celebrity opinions – 36%
- Left-wing agendas – 34%
- Gotcha journalism – 33%
- Right-wing agendas – 32%
- Puff pieces in exchange for access to other important interviews – 31%
- Blind items being reported in the news – 30%
- Hit pieces – 21%
- Rise of independent contributors versus on-staff media – 14%
More than two-thirds of respondents see no hope for the media, at least in the immediate future. A whopping 67 percent “believe ethics in journalism will be worse during the 2020 presidential campaign.”
People also understand exactly how all this bad journalism damages the country. Almost two-thirds, 64 percent, say it exacerbates division and partisanship; 63 percent said it “fuels inaccuracies”; 60 percent said it incites hate; 57 percent said it incites fear.
Yes, our media are awful and the public know it. Get this… The group with the highest ethical rating, local print and online journalists, are considered ethical by only 40 percent.
Meanwhile, only 23 percent consider local TV reporters and anchors ethical, followed by 22 percent for national print and online journalists, and a deadly 15 percent for national TV anchors and reporters — 15 percent!!!
A plurality of 46 percent see journalism as less ethical now than it was in the past, while only 20 percent said the media are more ethical.
These are catastrophic numbers for any institution, much less one like the media that lives or dies based on integrity, goodwill, and moral authority.
But the media have worked overtime to lose the public trust, and losing that trust is the only real accomplishment they can point to over the last six years.